Rachel J. Beane

Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor of Natural Sciences and Associate Dean for Faculty Recruitment and Pre-major Advising

Prof. Beane is a geologist who interprets processes that have shaped our Earth. She has conducted mineral, volcanic, and tectonic research in New Zealand, Russia, Kazakhstan, Greece, western U.S., and Maine, with grant funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and Bowdoin. Her approach is to use mineral compositions and textures to interpret solid earth processes using a combination of methods including field work, light microscopy, and scanning electron microscopy (EBSD, CL, EDS, and BSE). She is a fellow of the Geological Society of America.

She enjoys teaching and mentoring undergraduate students at Bowdoin. She has been honored with the Bowdoin College Sydney B. Karofsky teaching prize for her “ability to impart knowledge, inspire enthusiasm, and stimulate intellectual curiosity.” And, she is recipient of the National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT) Neil Miner teaching award for “exceptional contributions to the stimulation of interest in the Earth Sciences.”

Prof. Beane currently serves as the college's associate dean for Academic Affairs with a focus on faculty recruitment and the pre-major advising program. During a previous term as associate dean (2016-20), she focused on faculty development and mentoring. In fall 2019, she also served as the acting director of the Baldwin Center for Learning and Teaching.  

She has lead national professional development workshops for science educators through the National Association of Geoscience Teachers and On the Cutting Edge, an NSF funded project focusing on faculty development. Summaries of her recent open-access articles related to faculty development and science education research are in the section below. 

Rachel Beane headshot


  • PhD, Stanford University, 1997
  • BA, Williams College, 1993